Research shows that the early childhood years are a critical period for language development. Because the facility for perceiving and producing new foreign speech sounds starts declining at age 6*, The Brick Church School offers a Spanish program using the methods of the Carousel of Languages. The Carousel Teaching System® (CTS) follows a methodology emphasizing the importance of multi-sensory learning through verbal, visual, and tactile association. CTS is based on early childhood themes and learning standards. Themes and skills grow more complex as children learn and progress. Every age group at Brick has a lesson three times a week. Twice a week our Spanish teacher visits classrooms and speaks Spanish to the children whatever they are doing. Spanish has helped our children to play with sounds and the meanings of words, demonstrating a flexibility in thinking that wasn’t present before this foreign language experience. Our students can often be heard yelling out a hearty “Buenos Dias” to their Spanish teacher when she enters the classroom or they see her around the school or neighborhood.
* Dr. Lise Elliott, Early Intelligence: How the Brain and Mind Develop in the First Five Years of Life, Penguin 2001.